Frequently Asked Questions

If you have a question that is not answered below or would like more detail on any particular point please contact us with your specific queries.

Q: How much does it cost to hire Sir Duke?

A: Sir Duke can usually cost a performance to your budget. The quoted figure depends on

  • the distance we have to travel to the venue
  • the number of musicians playing in the band
  • the length of time between the agreed arrival and finishing times
  • whether any additional equipment is required for larger halls or greater numbers
  • whether any additional services are required, such as a DJ

The more detail that you can give of your requirements, the more precisely we can quote a figure. Contact us now for a full quote.

Q: What is included in your standard price?

A: Included in our standard quote (unless specifically written otherwise) are our travelling expenses, all the PA and other equipment we need for our performance (which may be used by you for background music between our sets).

Q: Can you provide lights?

A: Yes, if the venue's own lighting is unsuitable, we use one or two basic white floodlights to light the stage area without additional charge. By prior arrangement, we can bring 8 spotlights with coloured gels on stands operated by a sequencer or sound-to light trigger mechanism. This latter option adds a small amount to the total bill and increases our setting-up and taking-down times by 15 - 20 minutes.

Q: How long does it take you to set up?

A: In most cases, about one and a half hours. The larger the stage (or reserved floorspace) the easier it is for us and therefore quicker. Set up usually concludes with a sound-check to ensure that everything is working properly, with the correct volume and balance of sound for your venue. This should be scheduled so as not to interfere with your event.

Q: What songs will you play? Can you play the first dance at our wedding reception?

A: We have a wide repertoire of songs, centred on Swing, Soul, R&B and Disco classics. You are welcome to choose your favourites from the list and we'll include as many as we can. If you want a first dance that isn't part of our existing repertoire, with sufficient notice we can frequently learn your request. If not, we can play any CD or MP3 you supply before we start to play live. Please check out the Music page for our current repertoire.

Q: How long do you play for?

A: We typically play 2 sets of about 50 minutes to 1 hour each, depending upon your requirements. We can also optionally provide a "dinner jazz" set while your guests are eating or during a reception. In all circumstances, the playing times are fully negotiable and we'll do our best to fit in with your plans.

Q: Can you also provide a disco?

A: Absolutely. We can provide a disco run by a professional DJ in between live sets and/or to finish the night after our live performance. This will usually add a small cost to the price of the band.

Q: What will you wear?

A: We usually dress to fit in with your occasion and the set, from a simple black trousers and white shirt, to lounge suits and ties, to dinner jackets and bow ties. Please feel free to specify your required dress-code.

Q: How much space do you need?

A: For the full 10-piece band, a space of 6 x 3 metres (20 x 10ft) is the minimum required.

Q: What do I have to provide?

A: The important things we require are:

  1. The agreed stage area (or equivalent floorspace)
  2. A safe, reliable mains electricity supply nearby - a minimum of 2 double power sockets
  3. A changing room as close as possible to the stage
  4. Refreshments for the band and crew would be very much appreciated. As well as the usual 10 members of the band, we will sometimes have a Sound Engineer, DJ and roadie to be considered when making arrangements.

Q: I can't meet one of your requirements listed above. Does that mean that you won't be able to play for me?

A: Not necessarily! We try to be as flexible as we can on ALL ASPECTS of a booking. We can arrive early to be set up before any of your guests arrive; we can extend our sets to an hour each or even a little longer; we can provide live background music as a "drinks" or "dinner jazz" set with a solo pianist, duo, trio or quartet; we can play as a 5 or 6-piece instead of the full 10-piece; we can cope without a changing room (but be aware that there will be a number of empty instrument cases that have to go somewhere). Bear in mind, however, that whenever extra personnel, extra time, work or inconvenience arise you should expect an increase in the fee.

Q: Does the band have insurance?

A: Yes, Sir Duke has full Public Liability Insurance.